Ki-O-Rahi is a traditional Maori game that is popular all over New Zealand and is also known in other countries, mainly Europe, France. The game was created in The Legend of Rahi and Patupaiarehe where Rahi’s wife, Patupaiarehe was abducted and taken far away. Rahi had to find her and when he did, Rahi’s tribe and the tribe that abducted Patupaiarehe created Ki-O-Rahi to play instead of going to war. The game is still going and there are tournaments for adults and children.
There are seven players on each team. There are two types of Ki-O-Rahi, there is the tackle and the non-tackle. Professional adults play tackle in competitions but normally children just play non-tackle with tags. The game is played on a circular field with no outs, the purpose of the game is to hit the te tupu and to defend it by blocking the other team from hitting it with the ball. There are no positions, but there are rules, no more than five people can enter the circle around the te tupu.
If you didn’t know, there is a legend behind this game, it is a story from back in the olden days. The words used in Ki-O Rahi are connected to the story. The story is about Patupairehe stealing Rahi’s wife Tiarakurapakiwai, then Rahi trys to save her. As soon as Rahi rescued his wife, they decided to make peace and they made up the game Ki-O-Rahi. Pou represents the 7 stars of Matariki. Te Tupu represents the rock where Rahi was trapped, Ara represents the pathway of silver ferns.